HGTV star Tarek El Moussa appears to have scrapped his “biggest turnaround ever” in North Hollywood after intense opposition from residents — days after they finally reached a compromise.
Tenants facing eviction have told DailyMail.com that the 42-year-old property mogul abandoned the project without informing them – just as they were about to sign a ‘substantial relocation deal’ to draw.
The turnaround would generate a $26 million profit, involving El Moussa’s investment firm TEM Capital, along with his wife Heather Rae’s company HEM Capital and two separate ventures – Pyramid Development Group and WJK Development Co.
The reality TV star promoted the flip earlier this year as his ‘Super Bowl’ and outlined plans to replace several family bungalows in LA’s Arts District with a towering white apartment building with 138 apartments.
He offered Hartsook Street tenants the legally required minimum of $12,000 to leave, but five hardline residents said they wouldn’t move out of their rent-controlled homes without a better deal.
But now, residents say, El Moussa has left the project and they still face the prospect of eviction.
HGTV star Tarek El Moussa appears to have scrapped his “biggest turnaround ever” in North Hollywood after intense opposition from residents — days after they finally reached a compromise. (Photo: El Moussa with his wife Heather Rae, who is also involved in the project)
‘Tarek withdraws. We don’t know why,” said resident Clare Letmon, 32, who is eight and a half months pregnant and living on the streets with her husband Jonpaul Rodriguez, 35. (Image: Letmon and Rodriguez at a union march in early October)
El Moussa described his vision for the new block (pictured) as a ‘super modern’ ‘incredible building’, adding: ‘This is Hollywood man, this is where everyone wants to live’
Resident Clare Letmon, who is eight and a half months pregnant, told DailyMail.com that their union believed they had finally reached an agreement with El Moussa’s business partners when he suddenly halted the project.
‘Tarek withdraws. We don’t know why,” said Letmon, 32, who moved up the street from Florida in January 2019 with her husband Jonpaul Rodriguez, 35, hoping to start a family there.
TEM Capital did not respond to a request for comment from DailyMail.com in time for publication – although Hartsook residents shared screenshots of El Moussa appearing to label their claims as “lies, lies, lies” on TikTok.
Letmon said the deal they would now sign appears to have been nothing more than an empty offer to keep their vocal union quiet while he promoted his new book.
“He dragged us along and wasted our time, we suspect, by keeping quiet during his book tour,” Letmon said.
‘We are still facing an eviction in June from the current owner. With Tarek withdrawing, we simply have less time, resources and capacity than before he got involved.
‘After months of negotiations – time that we will not get back – we reached an agreement and waited for signatures.
“It was painful and horrible and then the rug was pulled out from under us as we prepared to move.”
Letmon said residents noticed that TEM Capital had removed the project from their website on Nov. 1, and approached other buyers the next day who revealed he was pulling out.
She said the buyers suggested this was due to union resistance – meaning they spoke out against the shift and joined mass protests over LA’s wider housing crisis.
Hartsook tenants also took to Instagram to announce the apparent cancellation of the NoHo 138 project just as they reached a deal with El Moussa
Letmon and Rodriguez had hoped to start their family on Hartsook Street when they were hit with Ellis Act eviction notices earlier this year.
The reported decision comes as his wife was mysteriously removed from Selling Sunset as the show prepares for its seventh season.
In an Instagram post defending his project, El Moussa previously said: “I am not evicting anyone,” adding: “The communications to the current tenants were made by the current owner, not by me or the partners of NoHo 138.’
Letmon disputed this, saying, “Tarek may not have filed the papers himself, but he is involved in a lawsuit where that is the outcome.” Now it appears he has abandoned them, with no idea if they will be compensated for the ordeal.
The expectant mother described their case as a microcosm of what’s happening across LA as developers buy up previously affordable housing, build expensive new housing and push people into homelessness by raising prices in their area.
Other tenants in Hartsook thrown into turmoil by El Moussa’s latest move include Cathy Livas, 78, who has lived in her home for more than 50 years and cares for her 56-year-old disabled son there, and singer and yoga teacher Naomi Nektare, 49. .
TEM Capital said in August that tenants had been treated “respectfully and fairly” while receiving compensation to leave.
After divorcing his first wife Christina in 2018, El Moussa began dating Selling Sunset star Heather Rae Young, now El Moussa, the following year.
Other Hartsook tenants thrown into turmoil by El Moussa’s latest move include Cathy Livas, 78 (left), who has lived in her home for more than 50 years and cares for her 56-year-old disabled son there , and singer and yoga teacher Naomi Nektare, 49 (right)
The united tenants, ranging in age from 32 to 78, who have remained in place under horrific conditions, say they will not be evicted easily and are determined to oppose the development, called NoHo 138.
Residents of Hartsook Street in the NoHo Arts District were threatened with eviction notices amid El Moussa’s $26 million ‘biggest flip ever’ – which also involved his wife Heather Rae El Moussa’s company
The couple married on October 23, 2021 at the Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel in Montecito, and their wedding day became a Discovery+ special called Tarek and Heather: The Big I Do.
They have since starred together in their own HGTV show, The Flipping El Moussas, and had their first child in February. El Moussa also has two children with his ex.
The reality TV stars document their glamorous lifestyle on social media and regularly post photos of their frequent vacations, home visits and his gym routines on Instagram and Twitter.
The famous couple recently launched a luxury line of monochrome home products called Home By Tarek and Heather.